On November 5, the Turkish ASFAT business laid the keel of the fourth PN MILGEM class corvette in Karachi Shipyard, Pakistan, according to Pakistan Navy’s Facebook account.
Admiral Muhammad Amjad Khan Niazi, Chief of Pakistan Naval Staff, was the Chief Guest.
During his remarks at the ceremony, the honorable Chief Guest expressed his delight at witnessing the keel laying of the MILGEM Corvette in Karachi Shipyard, which is being built in conjunction with M/s ASFAT of Turkey.
The Admiral emphasized that it is a historic occasion because the Ministry of Defence Production, Pakistan Navy, Karachi Shipyard, and M/s ASFAT of Turkey have joined forces to build two Corvettes in Pakistan, while another two are being built in Turkey. The Naval Chief praised KS&EW’s performance and stated that indigenization is at the forefront of our policy, and it is encouraging to see state-of-the-art warships being built in Pakistan.
The construction of corvettes in Pakistan is intended to boost the local shipbuilding sector and improve KS&EW capabilities. These ships are being built in accordance with modern naval ship class requirements and will be outfitted with cutting-edge armaments and sensors, including surface-to-surface missiles, surface-to-air missiles, and anti-submarine weapons. The addition of these ships would greatly increase the Pakistan Navy’s lethality and operational capacity.
Earlier, Rear Admiral Ather Saleem, MD KS&EW, discussed the shipyard’s performance, emphasizing that the shipyard is fully aware of and aligned with the government’s and Pakistan Navy’s aspirations for self-reliance in the defense shipbuilding industry. He added that profound friendship with brotherly country Turkey for this mammoth project will offer new vistas of further collaboration in Pakistan’s indigenous warship development and other defense sectors. MD KS&EW also emphasized KS&EW’s present manufacturing activities, which comprise constructions for both domestic and international projects.
Representatives from M/s ASFAT, as well as other high-ranking officials from the Government of Pakistan, Pakistan Navy, KS&EW, and the business community, attended the ceremony.
MILGEM project is a national warship program of Turkey. Managed by the Turkish Navy, the project aims at developing multipurpose corvettes and frigates that can be deployed in a range of missions, including reconnaissance, surveillance, early warning, anti-submarine warfare, surface-to-surface and surface-to-air warfare, and amphibious operations.
The contract for four MILGEM class corvettes for the Pakistan Navy with concurrent Transfer of Technology (ToT) was signed with ASFAT Inc, a Turkish state-owned Defence contractor, in 2018. The ToT entails constructing two corvettes at Istanbul Naval Shipyard while another two at Karachi Shipyard & Engineering Works (KS&EW).
MILGEM vessels are 99 meters long with a displacement capacity of 2,400 tons and can sail up to 29 knots. Corvettes are medium-sized boats bigger than ordinary patrol boats and smaller than warships but can be used for any military purpose. It has the capabilities to be used in any warfare mission.
The vessel is equipped with state-of-the-art weapons & modern sensors, including surface to surface, surface to air missiles, anti-submarine weapons, and Command & Control system. Induction of this ship in the Pakistan Navy would significantly add to the lethality of the Pakistan Navy’s capabilities and contribute to maintaining peace, security and balance of power in the Indian Ocean Region. These Ships are being constructed as per modern Naval Ship class standards with stealth features.
- Beam: 14.4m
- Draft: 3.9m
- Propulsion: CODAG (Turkey); CODAD (Pakistan)
- Speed: 15 to 30 knots
- Range: 3500 nautical miles (Turkey)
- Crew: 93
- Weapons: 1x gun 76 mm OtoMelara; 2x 12,7mm STAMP; 8 × Atmaca; 21 × RAM Block; 2 × 324 mm Mk.32 triple launchers for Mk.46 torpedoes (Turkey)
Check out Naval Library App to find out more about the specifications of the PN MILGEM Corvettes.